Johnny Vegas and Katherine Parkinson play Mr and Mrs Pooter in Andrew Lynch’s adaptation of the Grossmith brothers’ comic novel of 1892.
The story is a social vignette of Charles, the self-important but highly likeable clerk, his loving wife Carrie and their son William (played by Andrew Gower).
Much of the action takes place in the house that the Pooters share with their maid Sarah…and the noisy sound of passing trains. The Laurels in Brickfield Terrace is frequently visited by colourful and amusing characters, not least Gowing and Cummings, Pooter’s ‘trusty’ fairweather friends.
This full dramatisation has a Victorian sit-com feel and stays true to the book – with a couple of twists of Lynch’s own – capturing a kind of lower-middle-class aspiration that still has a tangible familiarity in 2012.
In Episode One, the Pooters move in to The Laurels. Charles and Carrie attend The Mansion House Ball and Willie arrives home from the bank in Oldham.
In Episode Two, Lupin’s lifestyle upsets the measured balance of everyday life, Carrie hosts a seance with Mrs James, while Mr and Mrs Pooter dine with Franching in Peckham and meet a Mr Hardfur Huttle.
Charles Pooter …… Johnny Vegas
Carrie Pooter …… Katherine Parkinson
William / Lupin …… Andrew Gower
Sarah ……. Sinead Matthews
Cummings (and Horwin) …… Adrian Scarborough
Gowing (and Borset) ……. Stephen Critchlow
Farmerson …… Joe Ransom
Trillip …… Adam Gillen
Daisy Mutlar …… Sarah Sweeney
Episode One premiered on BBC Radio Four on 1 July 2012 (with a repeat on 7 July 2012), followed by Episode Two on 8 July 2012 (with a repeat on 14 July 2012).
Both episodes were broadcast again in November 2016 on BBC Radio 4 Extra. They are currently unavailable online.